Blogging from A to Z

Blogging from A to Z is an April challenge in which bloggers use the letters of the alphabet as the driving theme for 26 of the 30 days of the month. Some may just write daily on any old thing, just so long as it begins with the proper letter. Others choose a theme and use that for determining what the daily topics will be.

Assigned days for each letter of the alphabet in the April 2013 A to Z Blogging Challenge

I chose a theme. Each lettered day, I will write a little blurb about a Paleocene mammal genus that begins with that letter. I will focus on genera that were found in my Ph.D. research collections (A study of the Torrejonian-Tiffanian NALMA boundary in The Breaks), and will showcase some of my old notes and SEM images. I had 72 different species in my dissertation collection, so I had hoped that I could cover most of the letters with that alone. Alas, I could only manage about half the alphabet with my own collection. I filled in the rest mostly with other mammalian genera that probably coexisted with the mammals I studied. There were still a few leftover letters that I filled with Paleocene mammals from around the globe. (It turns out that ‘Q’ is a unusual letter to start a genus name.)

Here are the genera I’ll cover. As the posts go live, I will link them here as well.

“A” is for Acmeodon

“B” is for Baiotomeus

“C” is for Chiromyoides

“D” is for Dissacus

“E” is for Elphidotarsius

“F” is for Fractinus

“G” is for Gelastops

“H” is for Haplaletes

“I” is for Ictidopappus

“J” is for Jepsenella

“K” is for Krauseia

“L” is for Litocherus

“M” is for Mixodectes

“N” is for Nannodectes

“O” is for Oxyclaenus

“P” is for Ptilodus

“Q” is for Qatranitherium

“R” is for Ragnarok

“S” is for Stygimys

“T” is for Tetraclaenodon

“U” is for Uintacyon

“V” is for Viverravus

“W” is for Wanolestes

“X” is for Xanclomys

“Y” is for Yuesthonyx

“Z” is for Zanycteris

Not all of these are valid taxa (anymore). I’ll make note of any changes of the naming scheme as I go along. My hope is that with brief discussion of these 26 genera, readers can gain some insight into how paleontology works and how species names are assigned. It will also help readers understand how we use fossils for assigning ages to rocks and what some of the pitfalls and problems are with doing this.


  1. Mary Hill says:

    Hi, great line up. looking forward to it. Follow me if you like. I would love some feedback. Been reading your site all month. 🙂 Really enjoying it. Hope to see the reincarnation of your photo blog too.


  2. Stephen Tremp says:

    Wow! I’m impressed. Unique and interesting. Fortunately you have the material to refer from in your past research. Good luck with everything!


  3. Ohhhh, I did not know about this April blogging challenge. Will have to give it some thought! Look forward to your posts!


  4. Sounds like we will be educated in the art of science when dropping by your blog during the challenge! All the best!


  5. Tarkabarka says:

    Oh wow, I am loving this! 🙂 Yay for science blogging!


  6. Dani says:

    I can’t even pronounce these so lets hope I can retain the info I’m about to learn about them in April! 😉


  7. Elise Fallson says:

    My first love is with insects, but I honestly can’t wait to read your posts. This is going to be so interesting!


  8. I am totally in for this theme… trouble saying theme, but sure and interested.

    Jeremy [Retro] #66
    AtoZ Challenge Co-Host
    Oh No, Let’s Go… Crazy


  9. Sounds way too intelligent for me, but my 15 year old will be all over this one. She loves all things prehistoric.


  10. That is going to be cool!

    Looking forward to this one.

    Tim Brannan
    The Other Side and The Witch
    Red Sonja: She-Devil with a Sword
    The Freedom of Nonbelief


  11. Mina Lobo says:

    I had no idea “Ragnarok” meant anything other than the end times in Norse mythos! 🙂


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